Pittsburgh Pirates Walk Off The Miami Marlins To Cap Off 9th Inning Rally
By Marty Leap
The Pittsburgh Pirates remained hot with a walk off victory against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday night
After a historically bad stretch following the All-Star Break, the Pittsburgh Pirates have gotten back on track in recent weeks. After defeating the Miami Marlins 6-5 in walk off fashion on Wednesday night, the Pirates are now 10-5 in their last 15 games.
This 10-5 stretch, however, comes after the team went 7-28 in their first 35 games after the All-Star Break. Due to this, despite the strong 10-5 stretch the Pirates overall record this season remains a porous 61-78.
Early on, the Pirates had chances against Miami starting pitcher ReynolRobert Dugger.
Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the 1st inning Bryan Reynolds reached on an error, Colin Moran was hit by a pitch, and Josh Bell singled. The Bell single scored Reynolds, tying the game at 1. However, Jose Osuna followed with an inning ending double play.
Then in the 2nd inning, Melky Cabrera and Cole Tucker recorded consecutive hits to start the inning. That threat would quickly end though when Jacob Stallings hit into a 2-5-3 double play and starting pitcher Trevor Williams grounded out.
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Adam Frazier was hit by pitch to start the 3rd inning and Reynolds hit a ground rule double. Reynolds double bouncing into the stands would prove to cost the Pirates a run. After Moran struck out, Bell was intentionally walked. Osuna then flew out to shallow right field and Cabrera lined out to end the inning.
After failing to score in the 3rd, the Pirates found themselves 1-for-7 on the night with runners in scoring position and they had already left five men on base. They also had hit into two double plays early on.
Facing the club that drafted him, Williams turned in his third consecutive strong start. In 6 innings of work he allowed 3 runs, only 2 of which were earned, on seven hits, a home run, a walk, and six strikeouts. Williams now owns a 2.63 ERA in his last three starts. Hopefully, this is Williams getting back on track on his way to finishing the season strong.
With the game tied at 3 in the 7th inning Kyle Crick was summoned from the bullpen. Crick’s miserable season continued as a he allowed 2 runs on a double, a home run, and a walk in 2/3 of an inning pitched.
Crick now owns a 5.06 ERA, 6.03 FIP, 15.3% walk rate, and he’s allowing 1.88 HR/9 this season. The implosion of Crick is a big reason why the Pirate bullpen has struggled so mightily at times this season.
After Crick exited the game, two of the newest Pirates took the mound. Yacksel Rios took over for Crick and pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings with two strikeouts. Ex-Pirate farmhand Wei-Chung Wang, who the team recently claimed off waivers from the A’s, followed with a scoreless 9th inning to set the stage for a Pirate rally.
Jose Urena took the mound for the Marlins in the 9th inning looking to close out a 5-3 lead. However, it would not take him long to blow the game.
Elias Diaz led the inning off with his 2nd home run of the season to cut the Miami lead to 5-4. Kevin Kramer drew a pinch hit walk, and then Frazier hit a ground ball passed shortstop that he turned into a hustling doubling. Reynolds then blooped a ball into shallow left field to score both pinch runner Erik Gonzalez and Frazier to give the Pirates a 6-5 victory.
The third and final game of the series is scheduled for 7:05 on Thursday night. Dario Agrazal (4.50 ERA, 6.09 FIP) will look to lead the Pirates to their third series victory in their last four tries. Elieser Hernandez (5.06 ERA, 5.78 FIP) will look to lead the Marlins to their first series since late July.